By Christopher Chia
Senior Pastor / Moderator
At ARPC, you can expect nothing less than a life encounter with the Lord Jesus Christ. You can expect nothing less than transformation by God himself. You can expect to be travelling from spiritual deadness to life. You will meet sincere believers to journey and mature with. You will be transferred from a purposeless life to a God-given vision. Our prayer is simple but grand: To Tell the World of Jesus and To Become More Like Jesus.
What will 2016 look like for us in ARPC?
Jesus has not come to offer us mere inspiration for living. That ambition and effort is offered by our man-made religions, politics, music or sports. Jesus has come to offer us eternal and euphoric salvation from Satan, sin and death. His high calling is for us to spread the Good News around and to make disciples of all nations with his teaching.
Glorious God, Glorious Disciples
Our 2016 theme is fulfilling Jesus’ calling: “Be A Disciple, Make A Disciple”. We begin with a 7-part series in January-February of the cost yet joys of following Jesus. We pray this series will transform our lives to be true disciples. Our second study is The Gospel of Matthew: “Meet Your King”. Each year, we “encounter Jesus” afresh by reading a Gospel. We come face to face with the greatest man who ever lived!
Our third study is the Old Testament book of Ruth: “The God of Reversals”. Where is God when we are desperately down and out? This book shows us how we can surrender our life to God even when we cannot see the next step! Our 1st half of the year ends with a topical series on “God and Work”. Love it or hate it, we cannot ignore work.
Our first highlight of 2016 is our Mission Week with Sydney Missionary & Bible College (SMBC). Mission Week (Mar 12-20) reminds us that we are part of God’s global mission. A group of SMBC students will be exposed to cross-cultural mission in Singapore. And we will be enriched by working with other races to serve God.
Our second high point is an Easter Musical by our youth ministry, BASIC. Our third highlight is our annual Church Camp. This year we are blessed to have Paul Tripp, from USA, teach us on radical living as disciples of Jesus. Come, be challenged. We pray to get to the heart of God’s high calling of us. By God’s grace, we expect a huge response to our annual Church Camp as always, so please register early.
The second half of 2016 begins with 2 Corinthians: “Godly Sorrow”. Our life seems to be full of sadness and disappointment. How can we carry on being faithful disciples when we are so tempted to lose heart? Come listen to this “Letter of Tears” about how not to lose heart. We will complete the year with Ezra: “Rebuilding with God”.
We have two major highlights in the second half of 2016. Our first Equip Conference (July 6-7) is “In the Beginning”. Alasdair Paine of St Andrew the Great church (StAG), Cambridge, United Kingdom, leads us in celebrating God’s Creation. Come and join us in this!
Our final highlight is our partnership with Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (RZIM) which is known for its apologetics. This “ASK” Conference (Sep 16-18) is to answer your deepest questions about God and life. Again, we expect for this and all our Equip Conferences to be well attended, so please register early.
Growing as God’s Family
By God’s grace, Mona and I begin our 26th year of serving God in ARPC. It’s been an absolute spiritual blessing and treat to be part of God’s people as we share the majesty of living under Jesus.
We first met some of you as listless teenagers, struggling singles, tentative couples, tired out parents, retired grandparents or lonely retirees. We have journeyed with you through your seasons of dizzy love, debilitating hatred or crushing sadness. We have rejoiced with you at weddings, sorrowed with you through setbacks and cried with you through sickness.
Yet, through it all, we have seen so many in ARPC grow in loving God as we complete His mission by His grace. It is with this undeniable assurance of God’s invincible love in Christ Jesus our Lord that Mona and I march forth – prayerfully and humbly with you in ARPC – to save displaced people with displaced loves.
Growing in Glory to God
God is glorified when the gospel is proclaimed, people believe in and become like our great Lord Jesus. Let us carry on God’s glorious mission that He might be rightly worshipped. God has graciously extended our ministry from ARPC@Adam to ARPC@Bishan.
We must rightly see this as God’s call to lovingly reach more people for Christ in our neighbourhood and country. So, we will be “One Church in Many Places” but our singular aim is ARPC: “Always Reaching People for Christ”. The loving, peaceful and joyful experience as “One Church in Two Places” is a beautiful expression and unique witness of ARPC to God’s glory in Singapore and the world. Churches speak of love and unity but very few walk the walk in obedience to God. God has blessed us with about 200 new people – as new believers or worshippers seeking a spiritual home – since last year. Praise God indeed!
Let us pray and be empowered by God to “Be a Disciple” and “Make a Disciple”. Come and join us in loving and worshipping our glorious God as his glorious disciples.